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Four Saint players feature against the Boomers 15 Aug 2013

The fight was brave while it lasted, but in the end there was just too much Patty Mills for the Tall Blacks to handle at the NSEC.

Andrej Lemanis' Australian Boomers won a cracking opener to the Fiba Oceania series over New Zealand's Tall Blacks 70-59, though they had to make some pretty serious second-half adjustments to find their groove.

The Tall Blacks led by seven (39-32) at halftime and were only two points in arrears at the start of the final quarter, but it was the Boomers who fired all the shots over the run home as the New Zealanders ran out of gas.

Nenad Vucinic's hosts scored just 20 second-half points (compared to Australia's 38) and were held to a miserable seven points in the final stanza as their offence stalled completely. They made just seven of their 27 field-goal attempts after the major break.

Mills was superb, and a constant menace for the Tall Blacks at both ends of the court. He may do his best work waving his towel on the bench for the San Antonio Spurs, but in the international game he's a class act, as we saw when he led all scorers at the London Olympics.

Mills finished with a game-high 20 points (8/18 FG, 2/9 3PT), five rebounds and four steals to provide the polish for what was, in the end, a solid performance. 

David Andersen added 12 points (5/8 FG) and seven boards for the winners, while the sharpshooting Matthew Dellavedova had 11 points (4/9 FG) in a poised showing.

Corey Webster paced the Tall Blacks with 14 points (6/16 FG, 2/5 3PT), but managed just four after halftime as the Boomers put the defensive squeeze on him.

 Mika Vukona added 11 points, eight rebounds and five assists, but he too was quiet over the final two periods. Casey Frank (nine points, four rebounds) and Tom Abercrombie (eight points, four boards) were the other chief contributors for the home side.

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